The 9 Best Laptop Cooling Pads of 2021

Keep your laptop from overheating and shutting down

The Ultimate Laptop Buying Guide
The Ultimate Laptop Buying Guide
Introduction

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

The Rundown
"The fans are controlled by a temperature sensor that shows you how hot your laptop is at any given time."
"The cooling pad has a convenient carrying compartment for your USB cable, so you don't have to worry about breaking or losing it."
"The Kootek Laptop cooling pad comes with five fans for cooling your laptop, which makes each individual fan much quieter."
"The five fans have a rotating switch on the side that allows you to precisely determine how much cooling you want for your laptop."
"The single, large fan has a variable speed, and the customizable lighting can be turned on and off."
Best for Portability:
HAVIT HV-F2056 at Amazon
"This pad is large enough to accommodate a 17-inch laptop and weighs only 1.5 pounds."
"Unlike most other pads, this one from IETS has a depression in the middle where the air is designed to flow freely."
"This is a lightweight, all-mesh cooling pad with an ergonomic design to make typing more comfortable."
Best for Gamers:
TopMate C11 at Amazon
"The C11 is a feature-packed RGB laptop cooling pad complete with height adjustment, multiple lightning modes, and charging."

The best laptop cooling pads should be lightweight and have built-in fans to keep you laptop cool. High-end computing (like gaming) is all about thermals and keeping the inside of your computer cool. As your computer works harder, it gets hotter. Sometimes your laptop can get hot to the touch, which also makes working on your lap uncomfortable or even dangerous, depending on what you're doing. 

Laptop cooling pads do what their name suggests, promoting good airflow around and through your laptop. There are some active cooling elements involved, as well, such as fans. Airflow is vital to the proper operation of your laptop, so let one of these cooling pads help. If you're looking for other options to keep your laptop safe and secure, be sure to check out our roundup of the best laptop cases and sleeves.

Otherwise, read on to see the best laptop cooling pads to get.

Best Overall: Thermaltake Massive CL-N002-PL12BL-A

What We Like
  • Temperature sensor

  • Large fans

  • Two USB ports

What We Don't Like
  • Fans are loud

  • Not for bigger laptops

The Thermaltake Massive CL-N002 is a great option for keeping your laptop cool. Two large (and loud) fans keep your laptop cool with a large flow of air. The fans are controlled by a temperature sensor that shows you how hot your laptop is at any given time. There's also a turbo mode for heavy-duty work on the laptop. 

The cooling pad has feet on the back to raise up your laptop to a more ergonomic level. There are two USB Type-A ports. Since the cooling pad needs one USB port for power, it's nice enough to provide you with two, so you essentially get one extra. This cooling pad is not meant for larger laptops, though. You're going to top out at around 15 inches or so. Larger laptops can technically fit on there, but they'll hang off the sides.

Number of Fans: 2 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17 inches | Fan Speed: Max 1300 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best Budget: TopMate C302 Laptop Cooler

What We Like
  • In-device storage for USB cable

  • Extra USB port

  • Quiet

What We Don't Like
  • Feet to hold laptop are too long

  • Extra USB port is ugly

For those who are a bit more budget-conscious, check out the TopMate C302 Laptop Cooler. Fun fact: A lot of people use this to cool their routers, but it's designed for laptops. Two fans keep the temperature of your laptop nice and cool, and the cooling pad even has a convenient carrying compartment for your USB cable, so you don't have to worry about breaking it or losing it in transit. 

The laptop cooling pad has an extra USB port on the end of the USB plug. This means you won't have to sacrifice a USB port to power the device, and the extra USB port is in the same place so it doesn't interrupt your workflow. The plug itself is a little on the ugly side, however.

The only real downside we could find to this cooling pad is that the feet placed at the top of the laptop pad to stop the laptop from sliding when it's at an angle are a little too long, so they tend to poke out higher than the keyboard deck. That can be uncomfortable when typing. Other than that, this is a pretty solid cooling pad for your laptop.

Number of Fans: 2 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 15.6 inches | Fan Speed: 1300 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best for Quietness: Kootek Laptop Cooling Pad

What We Like
  • Multiple angle adjustments

  • Five fans

  • Large enough for 17-inch laptop

What We Don't Like
  • Flimsy legs

The Kootek Laptop Cooling Pad comes with five fans for cooling your laptop, which makes each individual fan much quieter. Just plug the cooling pad into your laptop and the five fans kick in and greatly increase airflow to your laptop. You can select different combinations of fans to work, which makes this very customizable. 

The pad itself is large enough for a 17-inch laptop. The cooling pad can adjust to up to six different angles for a more ergonomic fit, but be warned—the legs are a little on the flimsy side. The polycarbonate legs set into slots in the base leg, and the base is very narrow where those slots are, so this cool pad will not take abuse very well. As long as you're careful, you should be in good shape.

Number of Fans: 5 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17 inches | Fan Speed: Max 2000 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best for Gaming: HAVIT 5 Fan Laptop Cooler

What We Like
  • Quiet

  • Variable speed

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • USB ports limited to 2.0

The HAVE 5 Fan Laptop Cooler is named for its five fans. These fans are completely adjustable, with a rotating switch on the side that allows you to precisely determine how much cooling you want for your laptop. This is handy because you will need more cooling during gaming sessions than you'll need when you're surfing the web or watching videos. Despite having five fans, the pad is virtually silent. Plus, it weighs under 2 pounds while still being able to support laptops up to 17 inches in length. That makes this cooling pad very portable.

The one nitpick we can find with the pad is the fact that the two USB ports are limited to USB 2.0. They may not be adequate for things such as data transmission. Accessories and peripherals should work just fine, but you probably won't want to plug a hard drive into these extra ports. But otherwise, this is a solid buy if you want to game, or even just take in some Netflix.

Number of Fans: 5 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17 inches | Fan Speed: Max 1500 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best Splurge: Thermaltake Massive 20 RGB Notebook Cooler

What We Like
  • Very customizable

  • Can accommodate laptops up to 19 inches

  • Three adjustable height settings

  • RGB lighting

What We Don't Like
  • Requires two USB ports to power lights and fan

  • Very large

  • Inefficient airflow

This Thermaltake Massive 20 RGB Notebook Cooler is really large and fancy. A strip of red, blue, and green (RGB) LED lighting around the outside will appeal to gamers. The single, large fan has a variable speed, and the customizable lighting can be turned on and off. In short, you can make this cooling pad yours. Plus, due to its size, this pad can accommodate laptops up to 19 inches in length. Not a lot of cooling pads can claim that.

The one large fan makes airflow around this pad fairly inefficient, however. Several smaller fans can blow air more directly where it's needed, whereas a single fan provides just one large gust of air. That may or may not be helpful. Plus, if you want both the fan and the lights, you need to sacrifice two USB ports for the privilege. The cooling pad offers no additional USB ports.

Number of Fans: 1 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 19 inches | Fan Speed: Max 800 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best for Portability: HAVIT HV-F2056 Laptop Cooler

What We Like
  • Two extra USB ports

  • Lightweight

  • Holds up a 17-inch laptop

What We Don't Like
  • Short power cord

  • No separate light controller

If you're looking for a lightweight laptop cooling pad that you can carry around, look no further than the HAVIT HV-F2056. This pad is large enough to accommodate a 17-inch laptop and weighs only 1.5 pounds. The cooling pad has two extra USB ports on the back next to the power switch, so it acts as a USB hub.

The switch on the back controls both the lights and the fan, which means if one is on, they're both on. That's not ideal, especially in situations where you have a partner who finds the lights distracting.

The included USB power cord is also fairly short, so if you have a larger laptop, or if your USB ports are positioned closer to the front of the laptop, you may need a different cable. Aside from that, this cooling pad is very firm and lightweight, making it an ideal traveling companion for the serious gamer.

Number of Fans: 3 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17 inches | Fan Speed: Max 1300 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best Design: IETS GT300 Double Blower Laptop Cooling Pad

What We Like
  • Air filters

  • Adjustable height

  • Great design

What We Don't Like
  • Very bulky

  • Won't accommodate all laptops

The IETS GT300 laptop cooling pad is one of our favorites on this list, but it's not our top pick for one big reason. It won't work with all laptops, as the fan is designed to blow air up from the bottom. If your laptop doesn't have cooling vents on the bottom, such as MacBooks, the blower will not be very helpful.

But from a design perspective, this cooling pad has a lot to like. Unlike most other pads, this one from IETS has a depression in the middle where the air is designed to flow freely. It also has washable dust filters to help keep dust out as well as cool air flowing. Dust can be as much of a problem for laptops as lack of airflow. As a result, this cooling pad is quite bulky and not easily transportable.

You do get many adjustable height settings for ergonomics. The adjustable front clips, which keep the laptop from sliding, lie flush with the keyboard deck. This means they won't get in the way of your typing, which is awesome. It also has RGB lighting for the gaming crowd, which looks pretty slick on this chassis. Overall, we love to love this cooling pad even if it's not for everyone.

Number of Fans: 2 (blowers, not fans) | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17.3 inches | Fan Speed: Max 4500 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best for MacBook: Targus Portable Lightweight Chill Mat Lap

What We Like
  • Ergonomic design

  • Dual fans

  • Built-in cable w/ compartment

What We Don't Like
  • No extra USB ports

  • Not portable

If you're toting a MacBook these days, you may want a cooling pad to match the aesthetic. That's where the Targus Portable Lightweight Chill Mat comes into play. This is a lightweight, all-mesh cooling pad with an ergonomic design to make typing more comfortable. The dual fan design is powered by a USB Type-A plug on the side. Please note that if you're using a newer MacBook, you'll need a USB-C hub to power this properly. The cable is built into the cooling pad, though, making it super convenient.

The pad is a bit bulky since it doesn't collapse down flat, making it difficult to transport. But this cooling pad will be great for your MacBook, keeping it nice and cool while you're powering through your workday or gaming.

Number of Fans: 2 | Number of USB Ports: 4 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17 inches | Fan Speed: Max 6400 RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Best for Gamers: TopMate C11 Laptop Cooling Pad

What We Like
  • Six high speed fans

  • Seven RGB lighting modes

  • Quiet

  • Hight adjustable and includes phone stand

What We Don't Like
  • Some reviewers report durability issues

The TopMate C11 is a laptop cooling pad that seems built for gamers. It features a total of four small fans and two large fans that are capable of hitting high speeds to keep your laptop cool. The big fan can hit 1250RPM, while the small fans can hit 2400RPM which is impressive. Despite the numerous fans, it's still quiet with relatively low working noise. For a stylish touch, there are RGB light bares on both sides with seven different lighting effects including color breathing, monochrome, and other features.

The stand has five adjustable heights and there's a built-in phone stand so you can keep your device near you at all times. The stand can handle laptops between 11-17.3 inches in size and it features two USB ports for pass-through charging and additional accessories.

Number of Fans: 6 | Number of USB Ports: 2 | Compatibility: Laptops up to 17.3 inches | Fan Speed: Max 1250-2400RPM | Adjustable: Yes

Final Verdict

Our top overall pick has to go to the Thermaltake Massive cooling pad (view on Amazon). Its dual 120mm fans move a ton of air, and the temperature sensor lets you know how things are working. The front display is super handy when you're trying to stay on top of your thermals, so it's a smart way to go. If you're looking for something more portable, the HAVIT HV-F2056 (view on Amazon) is a good choice, holding up a 17-inch laptop while keeping its weight down to just 1.5 pounds. It has lights and fans, which makes it great for gamers, and it folds down flat so it'll slide right into your bag. Plus, the cable comes built into a compartment for easy portability.

About Our Trusted Experts

Adam Doud has been writing in the technology space for almost a decade. When he's not hosting the Benefit of the Doud podcast, he's playing with the latest phones, tablets, and laptops. When not working, he's a cyclist, geocacher, and spends as much time outside as he can.

What to Look for in a Laptop Cooling Pad

Ergonomics - As long as you're using a cooling pad, you may as well get better keyboard positioning as well. Some cooling pads have several height adjustments that can make typing easier and keep you from looking down a lot, which can cause back trouble.

Fan noise - One key component to a cooling pad is the fan or fans that it uses. Larger fans are typically noisier, so several small fans might do a better job at remaining quieter. Fan noise is one thing you can't get rid of once you have it.

Cooling location - Look for the vents around your laptop, and then look where the fans are located on the cooling pad. They should be in roughly the same place. Blowing cool air against a flat surface isn't terribly helpful. Blowing cool air into a fan intake is much more efficient.

FAQs

Can I use a laptop cooling pad on my lap? 
Indeed! One of the best reasons to invest in a laptop cooling pad is to keep your hot laptop off your skin. You can certainly use a cooling pad on your lap, as long as you don't restrict airflow.

What are common reasons a laptop will overheat?
The most common reason a laptop will overheat is obstructed airflow. This can be caused by dust or dirt getting into the vents. Even more common is someone using the laptop on a soft surface, such as a bed, couch, or blanket. Those surfaces can kill your laptop, and a laptop cooling pad ensures your laptop can always get the air it needs. If not a cooling pad, a large book or lap desk is a good idea.

What will happen if my laptop overheats?
Cooling pads do exactly that. They keep your laptop or other electrical equipment cool. If your laptop overheats, it will degrade performance and over time it will cause components to fail. Heat is a laptop's enemy, so it's important to do everything you can to keep your laptop cool.

Was this page helpful?